Today we will take a closer look at adding stitching to your felt. Stitching can be done by hand , machine or both. It enables you to add fine details to your work and to add extra movement and texture. You will need threads to go with your design. If you are using a sewing machine you will need to be able to free machine. I use a quilting foot but you can lower the feed dogs on some machines. When sewing by hand I find a chenille needle the most useful as it has a large eye for threading thick threads and yarn but a sharp point. You will also need some sharp scissors.
The first part of the picture I usually stitch is the horizon and outlines of hills. Use cotton to match the colours you are stitching on. You generally don't want the stitching to jump out at you. I then stitch contours of the land which helps the viewers eye to make sense of distance and direction. Here is my felt with just those parts stitched.
Next I outline areas that I want to stand out such as the house and the large flowers in the foreground. I also added lowlights and highlights to the tree trunk and stitched in between the rows of flowers. The stones in the wall were outlined to help with a feeling of texture and windows were added to the farmhouse. I've lined up the reels of cotton used in the machine stitching so you can get an idea of how many I use in my felts.
I could have stopped here but decided the work would be further enhanced by adding a little hand stitching. I've added french knots to the centres of some of the flowers and small stab stitches to some further back in the picture. I have also added a few tufts of grass against the wall. Even the most avid gardener has a few uninvited plants. Here is the completed felt mounted on a canvas.
People tend to think as the stitching as a sort of after thought but I hope this has shown what an important part of the process this is. In fact it can sometimes take as long to add the stitching as it does to lay down the fibres.
This picture was completed and listed in my etsy shop yesterday but has been sold already. However if you would like to see more photos of it. Some are closer up views. You can visit my shop by clicking on the etsy mini at the top of the page and look at my sold orders. You will still be able to access the photographs.